Police Handling in Seizure Case ProbedApril 24, 2017 |
by Associated Press
LARAMIE, Wyo. — A University of Wyoming student claims campus police mistreated him, breaking his wrist and bruising him, by forcibly removing him from class while he was recovering from a seizure.
Police removed senior petroleum engineering student Garret VonKrosigk from class and hospitalized him for the protection of himself and others, university spokesman Chad Baldwin said.
“The student’s complaints about the officer’s conduct will be reviewed by the UW Police Department, which is a normal practice,” Baldwin said.
VonKrosigk was about to give a class presentation Wednesday when he felt the seizure coming on. He left the classroom and went to lie down on a couch in a hallway, he told the Laramie Boomerang.
“I’ve had seizures my whole life,” he said. “So I’m kind of aware if something’s about to happen.”
He awoke surrounded by emergency medical technicians and campus police, he said.
He said he initially couldn’t remember his name, address or birth date, and remembers getting agitated and openly angry that the EMTs would not let him immediately return to class.
An EMT told him he could return to class if he could answer four questions, including his birth date and the president’s name, which he did, he said.
VonKrosigk said he could not remember receiving confirmation that he was cleared to leave.
“But I do know that the EMTs backed off and let me go back to class,” he said.
VonKrosigk said he rejoined his team and prepared to present as another team finished its presentation.
“I wasn’t disturbing the class or anything,” he said. “I was calm. I was complacent. Everything was fine. I was beginning to cool down.”
Classmate Tayln Costello said one police officer and two EMTs entered the classroom, told VonKrosigk he would be arrested if he did not allow his vitals to be taken, then forcibly removed him from the classroom. VonKrosigk was kicking and screaming, she said.
“We didn’t see anything, but we heard him screaming for at least 10 minutes,” Costello said.
VonKrosigk said he was tackled in the hallway.
“I have a bruised-up face, my ear’s all bruised up and my whole body is sore,” he said. “I have a black eye. My wrist was broken, so it’s in a splint. And I have bruises from where the handcuffs were tightened. My shoulder is all sorts of messed up.”
Baldwin said the responding officer was wearing a body camera and the footage obtained would be reviewed.
“The health and safety of our students is our top priority,” he said.